What are they thinking over there at the Academy? For the past few years, Oscar has fielded an odd nine entries in the Best Picture race. What, the Academy couldn’t come up with one more movie good enough to stand toe to toe with this lot? Before Midnight? How about Inside Llewyn Davis? Too Welsh-sounding? Or Lee Daniels’ The Butler? Putting the director’s name in the title probably killed it. By the Academy’s rules, a movie must get at least 5 percent of the total votes cast to merit a nomination. It seems these nominees were the only ones to rise to that bar. And so, like a baseball team, Oscar is putting nine on the field. — J.R.